Purchased as a cutter in 1796 and rigged as a brig.
Sold in 1816.
- 1799 Alexander Wilmot SCHOMBERG, 04/1798, Newfoundland, where he joined the squadron under Vice Ad. WALDEGRAVE.
When returning from that station with a convoy of merchant ships bound for Portugal RAMBLER was thrown on her beam ends by a tremendous gale on the Grand Banks and nearly foundered. Twelve of her guns had to be manhandled over board to save the ship. She was subsequently armed, at the captain's request with 18-pounders carronades which not only improved the stability but increased her close range broadside.
- 1800 Ditto, Channel. RAMBLER sailed from Portsmouth for Guernsey on 28 May and she and HARPY brought back a convoy of six transports with Russian troops from Jersey on 9 June.
- On 8 July she escorted a convoy to the Downs.
- RAMBLER sailed on a cruise on 1 August and arrived back at Portsmouth on the 29th. totally dismasted in a gale off the race of Alderney, were she had parted with FLY and a French privateer which the two of them had captured on the coast. She re-fitted at Portsmouth and sailed with ROWCLIFFE for Guernsey on 17 October with four transports of troops under convoy. RAMBLER brought them back from Jersey with Dutch troops on 27 October. When she tried to sail on a cruise on 19 December contrary winds forced her back and she was unable to sail again until the 29th. Capt. SCHOMBERG was promoted to post captain on 1 January 1801
- 1801 Peter RYE, 01/1801, Channel cruiser.
- On 21 February she arrived in Portsmouth having sailed for the Isle of White from Guernsey with several transports with the 85th. regiment on board, all of them, except for one transport, parted company in a gale. After cruising in the Channel RAMBLER was back in Portsmouth Dockyard again on 1 July after she had run on a sunken rock off Jersey. Repairs completed she went to sea for a couple of days on 6 August before sailing on an extended cruise on the 26th.
- 1802 Thomas INNES, Plymouth. RAMBLER, which came into Plymouth on 27 November, was re-fitted in Stonehouse Pool and moved out to lie between the Island and the main on 1 December to await Admiralty orders. The following day Plymouth was hit by hurricane winds with heavy rain. RAMBLER parted one cable and drove towards the rocks under Mount Edgecumbe but, letting go another cable and anchor, she brought to in safety and as soon as the weather moderated she sailed. She was struck by another hurricane in Dublin Bay and had to make sail over the bar after two anchor cables parted. RAMBLER returned on 3 January 1803 and went into the Barnpool on 5 February to await orders.
- By 20 February the fleet was being mobilised for war and great exertions were made to find volunteer seamen for RAMBLER. Bills were posted at all the places seamen congregated. A fortnight later on 10 March, Plymouth, Plymouth Dock and Stonehouse were in a state of siege as more than 400 men were pressed and taken aboard the Admiral's ship.
- On the afternoon of 29 May the first signal for a convoy in the new war was hoisted on board RAMBLER. Her orders were to sail for Cork the first fair wind with such vessels as may be ready. She sailed on 1 June and returned on 7 July. She continued with convoy duty between Plymouth and Ireland as a regular routine.
- On Friday 11 November 1803 a sale of prize vessels and goods was held at Plymouth and included the French brig FANNY which had been taken by RAMBLER during the summer.
- On the 18th. RAMBLER and NIMROD sailed on a cruise. RAMBLER was driven far to the west during the gales at the beginning of January 1804 and had been reported missing when she entered the Sound and came to in Cawsand Bay on 23 January.
- While she was employed in maintaining communication between the commander-in-chief off Ushant and the blockading squadrons at Rocheforte and Ferrol she was twice on the point of foundering and had to throw all her guns overboard.
- On the morning of 7 August 1804, while she was between the Ile Dieu (Ile d'Yeu) and the mainland, she saw nine sail close inshore. When it fell calm Capt. INNIS sent his boats under the command of Lieut. Walter FORMAN (for a period of three years he was the only Lieutenant on board) and Mr COX, master's mate, after them but the enemy convoy, favoured by a light breeze, managed to reach the cover of a battery at St. Gillies (St. Jean). Despite fire from field pieces and musketry, two sloops were brought off, the others running themselves aground near the pier head.
- 1805 Henry Evelyn Pitfield STURT, Torbay. During the year RAMBLER, among other skirmishes with coastal convoys, engaged three French national vessels and drove them and their convoy into the harbour of Le Conquet.
- 1807 Plymouth.
- 1810 Robert HALL, 07/1810, senior officer of the Cadiz flotilla during the investment of the city by the French army under Marshal Victor.
- On 26 September 1810 RAMBLER left Gibraltar with the first division of the gunboat flotilla to search for privateers to the westward. After being at the sweeps for 20 hours they discovered a privateer in the river at Barbate and Capt. HALL launched an attack on the night of the 28th. With seamen from RAMBLER and gunboat No.
- 14, the only one in company, and some marines and seamen from TOPAZE, numbering thirty in all, he landed in heavy surf and crossed the sand dunes to reach the river three miles upstream. Here the French vessel was protected by two six-pounders and thirty Dragoons.
- After a short fight the enemy was in retreat leaving five dragoons and seven horses. The seamen then swam out to the privateer and carried her with the loss of two of her crew. After the guns were spiked they embarked with the loss of marine William PARKER, killed, and marine M. WEAVER, wounded. Gunboat No.
- 14 was commanded by Lieut. SEAGROVE and the marines from TOPAZE by Lieut. Halsted. RM .
- The capture of the privateer removed a serious threat to shipping in the Straits of Gibraltar.
- 1811 Frederick Jennings THOMAS, 4 Mar.
- 1811, second in command of the Cadiz flotilla. (Capt. FELLOWES was in command, succeeded in June by Capt. CARROLL). The flotilla consisted of 25 vessels mounting 50 guns and manned by 650 sailors and marines. The second division under Capt. THOMAS was employed in guarding the entrance to the harbour and watching and harassing the enemy at Rota and San Lucar.
- On 5 July Capt. THOMAS, after receiving information from the FEARLESS gun-brig, Lieut. LE BLANC, that a French schooner had arrived at San Lucar from Seville, determined to cut her out. He sailed there with gunboat No. 20, and the crew of gunboat No. 5, Lieuts. STYLE and WROTTESLEY, and anchored outside the bar. The small boats went in at midnight with a strong S. W. wind and a heavy sea. The first schooner encountered proved to be American and detained them long enough for the enemy to be alerted. A strong fire from guns and muskets poured into the boats mortally wounding Lieut. LE BLANC and 4 men in THOMAS's 6-oared gig. Every man on the port side of the boats commanded by Lieuts. STYLE and WROTTESLEY was either killed or wounded and, as the wind increased to a gale, THOMAS was obliged to pull them back to the other side of the river. In all 20 British were killed and wounded.
- After the siege of Cadiz was lifted Capt. THOMAS commanded the flotilla which supported the force which relieved Seville on 27 August 1812 and about this time became senior commander.